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Manager has high hopes for Continental Champs
- Updated: October 19, 2012
By Mark Etheridge
Manager George Cornellissen is confident that Team South Africa will hold its own at the Africa Continental Championships in Burkina Faso next month.
The team of 16 riders will be involved in four different races in Yaound├®, in both road race and time trials formats.
“The selectors have chosen a very competitive team,” Cornellissen told Road to Rio 2016. “It’s interesting that we’ve entered a men’s elite and Under-23 team time trial team and I’m looking forward to them riding as a team.”
“The time trial team will consist of Jay Thomson, Reinhart Janse van Rensburg, Jaco Venter, Willie Smit, Jacques Janse van Rensburg and Songezo Jim.”
Looking at the other races due to be contested, Cornellissen said that in the 170-kilometre road race the team would look to experience. “We will be dependable on the expertise of Jay Thomson who is mostly riding overseas currently to play the leading role in the road race. They’ll do a circuit of 17km 10 times. He’ll be well supported by Jaco Venter, Reinhart and Jacques Janse van Rensburg. Then in the Under-23 division we can expect riders like Clint Hendricks (Tasol GT) and Avery Arendse (Acsis) to keep our hopes up. Avery recently won the Under-23 Engen Dynamic Cycle challenge race outside Wellington.”
When it comes to the women’s race its only natural for most of the focus to be on Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio. “We’re obviously look forward to her brilliant form after her great race at World Championships recently where she finished 12th overall. She’ll be well supported by Anli Pretorius, Lise Olivier and Leandri du Toit.”
The junior men race over 119km (seven laps of 17km each) and SA have a strong field of youngsters. “Nicol Germishuis and Jevandre Pauls should be the dominant riders if weather conditions are good on the day of racing.
“The individual time trial will be a gamble but we’ll push them all to the limits to ensure good results,” assures Paarl based Cornellissen.